U.S Will Arm the Kurds, Provide Air Support Against IS: Galbraith
August 8, 2014
by Nicholas Wapshott
The United States will break with the Iraqi government of Nouri a-l-Maliki this weekend and provide heavy weapons to the lightly armed forces of the Kurds, who are fighting to defend their capital, Erbil, against the Islamic State terrorist army.
The U.S. is also preparing to make strategic air strikes in support of Kurdish forces. IS fighters armed with heavy artillery and American weapons are advancing fast on the northern Iraqi city of Erbil, where up to 50 U.S. diplomats and an undisclosed number of U.S. troops are based. That is the view of Peter Galbraith, a former U.S. ambassador to Croatia and now a fellow at the Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation in Washington DC.
Meanwhile, American airdrops of humanitarian aid will not be enough to prevent further deaths among the up to 350,000 Yazidi refugees who have escaped without food and water to the remote and rugged terrain of Mount Sinjar. Early Friday morning, U.S. air strikes took place against IS artillery positions that have been pounding Erbil, a city of 1.5 million, at least before residents began fleeing.
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